BY Cheryl Till

With all this extra me-time in quarantine land, you may be at risk of wiling away your time in a Netflix binge related food coma. 

And while a good movie marathon may be a relaxing way to fill an evening or spend a day, TV time can get dull after you’ve blown through eight different seven-season series that you’re re-watching for the third time (just a completely random example of course *ahem* *ahem*). To help you pass the time away in a – hopefully – more fulfilling way, here are some pointers for starting a new hobby.

Be Realistic

No matter how pretty those mid-walk coastal/bush/top-of-a-mountain Insta photos are, if you love nature but hate exercise you might want to consider gardening instead of hiking. Choose a hobby that interests you and suits your level of commitment. Idealistically starting an activity that you realistically detest, will make you ditch your new interest faster than those New Year’s resolutions.

Find a Community

As introverts can attest, the concept of isolation may make you shy away at the thought, but the advent of the Internet has been a wonderous thing. Join discussions on goodreads, participate in a Victorian-era Sew-a-Long, or check out Ravelry projects to see if anyone else has accidentally knit their pair of socks together into a scarf. The countless number of free online forums that let you interact as much or as little as you like, will provide a place to draw inspiration, connect with like-minded others, and keep you encouraged through the inevitable bumps in the road that come with starting anything new.

Start Small and Give it Time

We’ve all heard that Rome wasn’t built in a day and that practice makes perfect… clichés, but they hold truth. You may be an IKEA aficionado, but if you’ve never picked up an actual hammer before, it could be a good idea to delve into carpentry by making a box before you build a shed. Accept that you will falter and sometimes fail, but give yourself some time to learn and you’ll see how much enjoyment you can draw from not throwing in the towel. You know, the sense of achievement people get so proud about. 

That said, if it’s been three weeks and you’re still on the same page – maybe Faulkner isn’t for you. Ditch that book but keep reading even if it’s a trashy romance. And who knows? In time, you may just circle back to that old book and find that you actually like it.

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